Health care leader, educator, innovator, and culture change champion leads Washington Permanente Medical Group, one of the state’s largest multispecialty medical groups.
SEATTLE — A new era has launched for the Washington Permanente Medical Group with the selection of its new executive medical director, Linda Tolbert, MD, JD, EdD, MPH, who officially began her position on May 15, 2023.
Dr. Tolbert now leads one of Washington’s largest multispecialty medical groups, with over 1,300 clinicians caring for more than 600,000 Kaiser Permanente members. She succeeds Paul Minardi, MD, who served in this role since 2019. Dr. Minardi is now executive vice president and chief executive officer of the KP Medical Foundation, the nonprofit organization created to organize expertise, systems, resources, and standards to manage ambulatory care operations in Kaiser Permanente's Washington and Colorado markets.
“We’re proud to welcome Dr. Tolbert to lead the WPMG team. As the first Black woman to serve as executive medical director at Kaiser Permanente, she brings 30 years of expertise serving our patients as an inspired provider, leader, and educator. She will partner closely with Angela Dowling, regional president for Kaiser Permanente in Washington, to deliver on the Kaiser Permanente mission for our members, clinicians, and communities,” said Michael Maxin, MD, chair of the WPMG board of directors.
Dr. Tolbert joined Kaiser Permanente in 1993. Over the course of her career at Kaiser Permanente, she has successfully introduced and implemented initiatives to improve clinician and patient experience, innovate and streamline operational efficiencies, work as a champion for culture change, and deliver technological transformations to extend and improve care.
“It feels like all my experiences to date have prepared me for this calling,” said Dr. Tolbert. “I am honored to have the opportunity to work together with the talented people of WPMG, and through our affiliation with the KP Medical Foundation, to serve our patients and clinicians.”
Dr. Tolbert has more than 20 years’ experience in operations, leadership, and strategy development. Prior to her new role, she served as the regional chief of dermatology at Southern California Permanente Medical Group and as an assistant professor of Clinical Science and inaugural chair of the Faculty Advisory Council at the Kaiser Permanente Bernard J. Tyson School of Medicine.
Dr. Tolbert received her medical degree from the Howard University College of Medicine in Washington, D.C. She completed her residency in internal medicine at Howard University College of Medicine and in dermatology at Los Angeles County King/Drew Medical Center. She earned her law degree from Southwestern Law School in 1996 and her master’s in public health from University of California, Los Angeles in 2002. Dr. Tolbert received her doctorate in organizational change and leadership from the University of Southern California in 2020. She is board certified in dermatology and internal medicine.
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, Kaiser Permanente has a mission to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve 12.7 million members in 8 states and the District of Columbia. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal Permanente Medical Group physicians, specialists, and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery, and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education, and the support of community health.